Accessibility statement

You're viewing an archived page from a previous Festival of Ideas. See this year's festival »

For What It’s Worth…
Candace Robb and Pamela Hartshorne

© Candace Robb
  • Monday 12 June 2017, 6.30PM to 7.30pm
  • Free admission
    Booking required
  • Explore York Library Learning Centre, Museum Street (map)
  • Wheelchair accessible

Event details

York Explore logo

University of York logo

Join renowned American medieval crime writer Candace Robb as she explores the York setting for her books. Based on her Owen Archer and Kate Clifford crime novels, Candace talks about the role of objects in the motivation for crime and in the creation of a fictional world within a real environment.

In historical crime novels, a sleuth is a cultural anthropologist - as is the crime writer. The clues to the mystery are embedded in the culture of the time - the things people hoard, covet, or are desperate to recover. What items were dangerous to possess and for whom? What was valued and by whom? What possessions might provoke suspicion because of the owner’s status? What possessions might be so desirable that you would resort to murder to possess them? Or so dangerous in certain hands that you would go to extreme lengths to recover them?

Find out as Candace and Pamela Hartshorne explore the material evidence of life in medieval York and discuss the choice of carefully-researched settings and objects Candace has used in her novels.

About the speakers

Since doing her graduate work in medieval history and literature, Candace Robb has been engaged in bringing to life the rich culture of the period, from the arts to the politics.She is the internationally acclaimed author of 15 crime novels featuring medieval sleuths Kate Clifford (The Service of the Dead, A Twisted Vengeance), Owen Archer (The Apothecary Rose to A Vigil of Spies) and Margaret Kerr (A Trust Betrayed). As Emma Campion she’s published two historical novels about the women of the English court in the 14th century, A Triple Knotand The King’s Mistress. Candace lives in Seattle, though her heart resides in York. 

After a haphazard career working and travelling around the world, Pamela Hartshorne first stumbled into writing as a way to fund a Ph.D. in Medieval Studies at the University of York. Twenty years, 60 romances and one Ph.D. later, she stepped out of her comfort zone and began writing historical novels that drew on her research into the streets of Elizabethan York.
Time’s Echo was published by Pan Macmillan in 2012, and was followed by three further novels set in present day and Tudor York. Her next novel, The Cursed Wife, will be out in February 2018.
Pamela still lives in York and continues to work on the local court records that formed the basis of her PhD research, juggling historical fact with historical fiction in her novels. She is also a freelance writer of non-fiction, an editor and a project editor, and is fascinated by the relationship between the past and the present, whatever she happens to be writing.


Books will be available to buy from the Waterstones' stall at this event.


Festival tweets